Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook continue to add to their “Dynamic Duo” resume.
In the Thunder's 121-118 overtime loss at Denver on Sunday night, they became just the third team tandem in the last 40 seasons to combine for at least 35 made free throws (35 for 38) in the same game. Durant finished 20 for 21 and Westbrook was 15 for 17.
Durant and Westbrook own the highest percentage (. 921) of any pairing. Utah's John Stockton and Karl Malone combined to make 35 free throws and Kevin Johnson and Tom Chambers combined to make 40, both during the 1989-90 season.
In the last four games, Durant (37.5 ppg) and Westbrook (33.8 ppg) have combined to average 71.3 points per game, which is 62.4 percent of the Thunder's average total (114.3).
Westbrook has four straight games of 30-plus points for the first time in his career.
For his latest efforts, Durant was named Western Conference player of the week for the fifth time this season. This comes in addition to being selected player of the month for October/November.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Despite 82 free-throw attempts, 61 fouls and the Nuggets and Thunder combining for 48 turnovers (24 each), Denver coach George Karl said Sunday night's game at the Pepsi Center was appealing.
“It was the best basketball game I have seen this year,” Karl said. “It was two teams going at each other. Both of them were pretty good tonight. I think we have overcome some situations and circumstances that are difficult. When you give up 50 free throws to win, it means you are doing a lot of good stuff.”
Westbrook drew heavy boos after he playfully intercepted two midcourt shots from Nuggets mascot, Rocky, late in the fourth quarter.
After snaring a second shot directly in front of the rim, Westbrook flicked a two-hand chest pass into the stands.
“I saw him block the shot and then he threw the ball into the crowd,” Karl said. “I know in the rule book it says you're not allowed to throw the ball into the crowd.”